May 7, 2006
A New Tortilla in Town

You’d think all the spring showers we’ve had would be enough to get me in the mood for the sunshine and warmth of Baja, but no, I had to have some carnitas tacos to fully get me in the right frame of mind.

Rounding up ingredients at Corti Brothers, I spotted an unfamiliar brand of corn tortillas, Abuelita’s, which, according to the packaging, translates as “Grandma's.”

The tortillas looked fresh and homey, and they were – as well as sturdy, toasty and a touch sweet. Turns out they’re a local product, recently introduced by Madrid Santa Fe Trading, a company near Sacramento Executive Airport.
Madrid has been making specialty Mexican foods for about 30 years, the past decade specializing in flavored gourmet tortillas, from the sweet to the spicy.
Anthony Madrid says he was inspired to try his hand at a better tortilla when the tortillas he and his family were using at a party kept breaking (they were a competitor’s, he notes).

Thus Abuelita’s, a corn tortilla so revolutionary that Madrid has a patent pending for the product. His secret to getting it to hold together? A little wheat gluten in the recipe, he acknowledges. “That's what makes them flexible and strong.”

A package of 10 sells for about $2, and they can be found at the Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op, Davis Natural Foods and Taylors Market as well as Corti Brothers. Nugget markets also are expected to start carrying them any day now, says Madrid.

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